Risk factors, clinical course and outcomes of pregnancy-related group A streptococcal infections: retrospective 13-year cohort study

A. Rottenstreich*, S. Benenson, G. Levin, G. Kleinstern, A. E. Moses, S. Amit

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives: To investigate the incidence, risk factors, clinical course and outcomes of pregnancy-related group A streptococcus (GAS) infection. Methods: A retrospective 13-year cohort study of culture-proven pregnancy-related GAS infection was performed at two university hospitals serving heterogeneous, multicultural, urban and rural populations. Results: Of 124 women diagnosed with pregnancy-related GAS infection, 115 (93%) were in the puerperium, an incidence of 0.8 cases per 1000 live births (95% confidence interval, 0.7–0.9). A multivariate analysis showed primiparity and cesarean delivery to be independent protective factors against puerperal GAS infection (adjusted odds ratios (95% confidence interval), 0.60 (0.38, 0.97) and 0.44 (0.23, 0.81), respectively). Of the nine remaining patients, eight were diagnosed after first trimester abortions and one had an infected ectopic pregnancy. Among the entire cohort (n = 124), the predominant manifestations were fever and abdominal tenderness. Twenty-eight patients (23%) had severe GAS infections. All were treated with β-lactams, and most (n = 104, 84%) received clindamycin. Only four (3%) required surgical intervention; the rest fully recovered with conservative medical treatment including antibiotics. No recurrences, maternal deaths or neonatal complications were noted. Conclusions: Pregnancy-related GAS infection is not rare; it lacks specific signs and still carries significant morbidity. Primiparity, a presumable surrogate for diminished exposure to children and thus less GAS carriage, and cesarean delivery in which perioperative antibiotic prophylaxis was uniformly provided, appear as protective factors against puerperal GAS infection. This hints to the importance of community-acquired GAS and may support shifting efforts from infection-control–oriented nosocomial investigations to screening and prevention–driven policies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)251.e1-251.e4
JournalClinical Microbiology and Infection
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 2019
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Community acquisition
  • Group A streptococcus
  • Nosocomial transmission
  • Prepartum screening
  • Prophylaxis
  • Puerperal sepsis

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